Chaos 59, 3180 YOLD
Moon of Stellar Clarity 7
ante diem XV Kalendae Martii MMDCCLXVII A.U.C.
Anno IVxxi æræ legis: ☉ in 10° ♓, ☾ in 3° ♓
9-Ocelotl 1-Miquiztli 2-Tochtli
Anthesteria/Dystros 29 in the 1st year of the 698th Olumpiad
Parmouthi 9, 1412 years after the last Pharaoah
Mīna 29 of Vijaya, 5123 years since Śrī Kṛṣṇa returned to his eternal abode
27 Rabīʿ ath-Thānī, year 6763 in the Yezidi calendar
I ended up taking my cues from the Wikipedia article on the holiday. I also tried to RSVP to SHARANYA's Amavasya Satsang which happened to be last night. SHARANYA became communi of the ἐκκλησία Αντινοου in 2010 and I have thought ever since that they would be the ones to introduce me to Hindu work. Unfortunately, they had a private thing eclipsing their satsang, so I'll have to go another time :-(
So, Wikipedia. Wikipedia mentioned that many people fasted for twenty-four hours to observe the day, followed by meditation through the night. And, of course, washing the lingam.
I hadn't fasted since college, when I would fast every Thursday out of a desire to play with that particular altered state of consciousness. Later in my college career, I had done 4- and 5-day protest fasts which were absolutely amazing. I had forgotten how difficult fasts could be when you're out of practice, and how much of a rest the brain comes to while fasting.
Yesterday's fast forced me to see how depressed I've become, and for that I am grateful to Ardhanarisvara.
I spent much of the day intermittently searching for my lingam. I never fully moved into this apartment (and now I think I'm finally going to move out soon), so all my stuff is still piled in boxes and mess in my room, including my very pretty lingam. I was unable to find it, unfortunately, leaving me a in a tiny bit of a quandary. Until I realized that I have a lingam with me at all times and, even better, it is particularly apt for Ardhanarisvara work, as it is part of a male-assigned body that's changing into an estrogen-dominant body.
So, after night fell, I ended up in my room, masturbating myself to erection and then washing said erection with milk and purified water, amidst the light of a candle (as I have no lamp to light) and the smell of incense, chanting the only mantra for Ardhanarisvara I know: AUM AIM HRIM KRIM ARDHANASHVARAI NAMAHA. I did this for an hour, interspersed with twenty minutes of just chanting, sometimes looking at a picture of the deva-devi, sometimes eyes closed and eternal, and eventually turning out the lights, too.
Chanting, chanting, the words echoing in the universe of my lungs, rippling cosmogonies across time, my flesh melting/dancing into fractals, ineffable regions of my brain unlocking. I'd never chanted that long (and I had to take a lot of breaks; the longest I spent chanting in one go was ten or eleven minutes), but I quite enjoyed it.
And right at the moment my fast finished and I was about to get up and break it with some food, I put out the candle and dropped like a stone into sleep.
Seriously, I had never had that kind of an immediate, stark break with wakefulness. In fact, it didn't even seem like I was falling asleep, more like I was being fallen asleep, like Ardhanarisvara wanted me elsewhere and I went. I wish I could remember my dreams. Woke up feeling crazy refreshed, though. It was one of the best sleeps I've had.